Tanzania’s Yanga sacks coach after ‘dogs and monkeys’ rant

Monday July 27 2020

Belgian coach Luc Eymael. PHOTO | FILE | NATION

Belgian coach Luc Eymael. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By Jacobs Odongo Seaman

Tanzanian giants Young Africans have parted ways with Luc Eymael following statements in which the Belgian coach described fans as “uneducated” people who “don’t know anything about football and just shout like dogs and monkeys.”

“I don’t enjoy your country (Tanzania). You’re uneducated people. I am disgusted. I don’t have a car, WiFi or DStv. These fans don’t know anything about football. It’s like monkeys or dogs when they’re shouting,” Eymael said in a podcast that went viral in Tanzania.

He also described the away pitches as the standard of seventh and eighth division facilities in Europe.

The Belgian has since apologised for last weekend’s racist comments, citing ‘frustration.’

“Those are not the words of Luc Eymael but of pure frustration and disappointment and emotions that made us lose our second place,” he said.

Yanga lost the league battle to arch rivals Simba, whose three consecutive titles saw them move to within one of the arch rival’s record haul of 22. The Belgian blamed Yanga’s woes on the Tanzania FA showing favouritism to Simba.

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“You have officials who are always officiating against you because you are a poor club and you don’t have any weight at the federation,” said Eymael, who in January accused match officials of racism after apparent handshake snub.

In a statement announcing the sacking, Simon Patrick Wakili, Yanga acting chief executive, said the club leadership was saddened by the “rude and discriminatory” statements.

“Due to these unethical and unsportsman-like statements, Yanga club has decided to fire Coach Eymael from today July 27th and ensure he leaves the country as soon as possible,” he said.

Wakili apologised to the country’s leadership, the Tanzania FA and fans, as well as the general public for the derogatory statements made by Eymael.

Eymael, 60, is a journeyman in African football and has previously coached Leopards in neighbouring Kenya and Rayon Sports in Rwanda before a round trip through El Merreikh in Sudan and El Geish in Egypt took him to Free State Stars from where he arrived back in Tanania with a swing in his steps after winning the Nedbank Cup.

He replaced Mwinyi Zahera in January.

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